On a recent 3 day trip to the mountains, a stop to look at some wild horses proved to be a much more exciting time than I could imagine. What started with a very normal shoot of a small group of wild horses soon became an adventure. A beautiful stallion emerged from the forest a couple of hundred yards from us. Much to our surprise he ran directly towards us. I was standing behind the truck taking pictures when he galloped up beside us stopping within 20 feet of me on the side of the road, prancing, strutting and snorting with nostrals flared. It was sureal, like something out of the movies. This big black powerful stallion was challenging us with all the antics of Joey the War Horse.
There was no question he was giving us a message that this was his turf and his mares. He spent a moment checking us out then started up the bank directly towards me. In that split second, I was thinking that this could be big trouble and instinctively, I stopped taking pictures and backed up towards the safety of the truck (not that there was time or I would have been under it!). At that, he seemed to feel that he made his point and he reeled around and trotted off along the road toward his mares. All of a sudden I was much braver and managed to take a couple more shots of him running away from me. Clearly, I had won the challenge.
This was one of the most exciting and amazing moments that I have had in my time out in the wild. It was totally unexpected, a rare moment and insight into the wonder of nature. What a rush!
We spent the next few days looking for bears and taking some pictures of the spring runoff but that is for the next posting. I hope you enjoy the pictures and captions and that you can feel some of the power and excitement that we experienced at that moment.